As House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff started to recall the transcript of the phone call between President Trump and Ukraine President Zelensky during Thursday's hearing with the director of national intelligence, his colleagues noted that something didn't sound right. Schiff claimed that Trump told Zelensky, "I want you to make up dirt on my political opponent, understand, lots of it, on this and on that, I’m going to put you in touch with people."
When a few Republicans on the panel noted those words were not in the transcript, Schiff clarified that his summary was meant as "parody." That explanation didn't exactly appease them, and it only gave more opportunity to Republicans like Rep. Elise Stefanik (NY) to mock him.
Today’s @HouseIntel hearing with Acting DNI Maguire is extremely important for Americans to hear. I focused on the whistleblower complaint itself & did not recklessly improvise a fake dialogue for parody purposes like Adam Schiff—the head of this committee—did. Watch part 1 ?? pic.twitter.com/5MBeV7XNCd— Elise Stefanik (@EliseStefanik) September 26, 2019
House Freedom Caucus Chair Andy Biggs took a different route. On Twitter he revealed that he has introduced a motion to censure Schiff (say that five times fast) for his improvised reading of the transcript.
Today, I introduced a motion to condemn and censure House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff. Chairman Schiff’s blatantly false retelling of @POTUS @realDonaldTrump’s conversation with Ukrainian President Zelensky was inexcusable. pic.twitter.com/yhwQuBvp3G— Rep Andy Biggs (@RepAndyBiggsAZ) September 27, 2019
Schiff read a statement that was "blatantly false," Biggs says in the video, calling it "inexcusable."
Trump did one better. He told Schiff to resign.
The California lawmaker says it's Trump who should leave.
The consensus of national security experts is clear: President Trump’s actions concerning Ukraine endanger America's security.— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) September 27, 2019
By subjugating the national interest to his own political interest, Trump has shown he is incapable and unwilling to fulfill his oath of office. https://t.co/8NttxkhDl2
The released transcript of the call between Trump and Zelensky did not include evidence of quid pro quo and, in the whistleblower complaint the complainant admits not being directly privy to their conversation. Yet, Democrats have used the phone call to launch an official impeachment inquiry.